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2015 MELITA HUME POETRY PRIZE SHORTLIST FOCUS: JULIE MORRISSY


SELECTED FOR POETRY IRELAND INTRODUCTIONS 2015
Julie Morrissy is a poet from Dublin currently living in her home city after spending several years living in Canada and the USA. She has been selected for Poetry Ireland Introductions 2015, and her poetry has featured or is forthcoming in Cyphers, The Dalhousie Review, Abridged and The Honest Ulsterman. The poem below is from her shortlisted unpublished collection.

Moving Day

 
it is straight forward:

boots or die

boots or your toes stick together

like tongues on ice

boots or an all-inclusive

with trays of crab claws and prawn cocktail

delicious sweltering heat just a plane ride away

 

I write letters home

inquiring about the handheld heat packs from childhood

postage costs one dollar eighty-five cents

and five to seven business days - not counting Family Day

another provincial quirk

 

like the wine rack

and the difference between the store and the dep

I meet my friends at Aunties and Uncles and pretend

pour Aunt Jemima’s over my pancakes;

this is not maple syrup

- this is regular syrup

 

I sit on the steps of my walled-in apartment;

in Montreal, they are all corridors

in Toronto, walk-in wardrobes

keep sifting through six people’s mail

waiting for the heat pack to arrive

 
poem copyright the author 2015
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Life Jacket

summer camp shirtsI couldn’t fit in then
are half my size nowI wanted to wear
smaller and smallerarticles of clothing
I shrunk to the sizethat disappeared

of an afterthoughtin a sinking ship body
too buoyant to sinktoo waterlogged for land
I becamea dot of sand